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Review: An Evening with Jimmie Macgregor and Friends, Mackintosh Church, Glasgow – Saturday 24 January

When Jimmy opened the concert alone on stage with a lively song, the first line was “I was born long ago”, which got a laugh from the audience, who were with him from the moment he stepped on the stage. He then introduced his talented array of guests.

Rab Noakes, Annie Grace, Stephen Quigg, Corrine Polwart and Sheena Wellington and multi instrumentalist, Alistair McRae who were referred to as “the orchestra”

The first duet with Jimmy was Tramps and Hawkers with Annie Grace, who also played small pipes, whistles and fiddle throughout the concert.

Sheena Wellington sang The Jute Mill Song, appropriate as she is a Dundonian and of course, the song she has made her own by opening the Scottish Parliament with it, “A Man’s a Man” by Robert Burns, which got a terrific response.

Many of the songs were of a bye-gone era and “Freight Train” written by Elizabeth Cotton was given a great treatment by Rab with his individual style of guitar playing, with harmonies, of course, by Jimmy.

Karine Polwart, with her pure and lovely voice, sang her own beautiful song, “Follow The Heron”.

I hadn’t seen Stephen Quigg for a number of years and had forgotten what a great voice he had and when he sang the very poignant “Only Remembered” written by Horatous Bonar, a 19th religious writer from Edinburgh, it brought the house down, as they say.

But, the ultimate accolade must go to Jimmy, who at the age of 84, played and sang for most of the evening. His self penned parodies were very well received and I particularly liked his Glasgow love song “I Like You” which was both funny and nostalgic.

At the end of the night, a capacity crowd gave him a well deserved standing ovation.

Moria Kerr
Presenter, singer-songwriter
Celtic Music Radio 95FM

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